The latest hype around is the internet is all about Opera Unite. For those who don’t know Opera Unite is a service that turns every browser into a webserver. It eliminates the server-client relationship that we are all used to and allows two computers to connect without the need of a web server. Sounds pretty cool ? Don’t decide just yet. First of all, i don’t know what percent of the general, non-tech-savvy users will understand what Opera Unite is (conidering that many do not know what a browser is).
No, lets look into the services that OU has to offer. To start with, Opera has provided 8 services.
File Sharing & Photo Sharing
A simple and safe way to share your files between computers. Safe ? As pointed out on a blog, the URL of the OU is not ever https://. And did i tell you that your computer and Opera should be running always, if you want to access your OU service from any other computer. I’d rather choose better alternatives like SkyDrive, Dropbox etc.
“Access your complete home music library from wherever you are” Are you kidding ? I’d rather take my music with me, than keeping my home computer running all the time for me to access its music. Of course it allows you and your friends to listen to music collaboratively. But thats sorta silly.
This service is the one that really transforms your browser into a web server. It will come in handy when you want to show off a fancy HTML page to your friend without having to upload it to any server. I don’t see any other practical use of it. Home networks and computers are not suited for hosting websites and that is the reason people pay the hosting providers for. Even if your computer is superman and can run 24/7 without any problems, you should choose better solutions like Ubuntu Server and the like, for hosting websites.
This is the only service that i see some sense in. You can chat with your friends online (which everyone does most of the time) without having to rely on Google, Yahoo, MSN and the like. But i don’t see me (or anyone) replacing the favorite messengers with OU yet. Not to mention, i’m damn sure i can’t convince any of my friends to try OU. The obvious question is “Whats the big difference ?”. For an average use, why does it matter at all whether he communicates directly or via a webserver.
These are just the services that Opera offers, to start with. It provides an API for developers to creates services on. But i doubt any of them will be useful enough to convince people to use Opera Unite. So, the answer to the million dollar question “Does Opera Unite really change anything ?” is probably a negative. To the end user, it doesn’t matter whether his computer communites with a webserver or not. Anyway, we’ll have to wait and see what the developers come up with.
Now, whats your opinion ? Do you think Opera Unite will be of any use to you ?